AAP, the Media and Public Opinion

A political party which identifies itself as a critique and reformer, rather than being a partner, of a power (political) system, which is overtly corrupt, powered by the media can create ‘chaos’ (the word critics of AAP use for its work) can bring sweeping reforms through public opinion i.e. the ballot box.

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Why not?

 

However, it’s easier said than done, as was evident in the Arvind Kejriwal Google Hangout on 14th April, 2014 anchored by Rajdeep Sardesai. I was baffled by the stupid questions asked by the viewers and also saddened because, the people, brainwashed by the media are targeting only AAP.

The following are a few questions and accusations raised against AAP:

1. Why did they go back on their word of not taking support from the Congress in the Delhi Assembly Elections?

2. Why did AAP betray the people of Delhi by dissolving the government in just 49 days?

3. Arvind Kejriwal earned the title of ‘bhagoda’ for resigning from the Chief Minister’ship.

4. The AAP does not have a clear economic and international relations policy.

These questions and accusations are repeated time and again by the media and have become the cornerstone for public debate, moulding the public opinion against the AAP.

The most important question to ask is, ‘why is AAP being used as a scapegoat?’

Answer:

The big and powerful political parties (mainly Congress and BJP) along with the corporate news media have the resources as institutions of power and ideas which cannot be rivaled by the AAP. The media works only on one principle: maximization of profit through advertisements, and for this they need viewers to be sold to their advertisers. So, their support to AAP isn’t issue based, but TRP based. The media is an institution which ‘manufactures’ public opinion. How can the media play a non-partisan role if their primary task of it is to ‘maximize’ profit?

Politics isn’t about rigid principles which can never be changed. Prescriptively, it is about values which form the core of any party or individual which adjusts itself in that core to the changing circumstances.

Example: It was the BJP which proposed to introduce 100% FDI during its term (1998-2003). However, BJP changed its stance on FDI when it was introduced by the UPA. Despite such a major change in its policy the BJP expects to come out as the largest party in the coming national elections and also harbours the dream to have one of its candidates as the prime minister.

Post-scriptum: The people, as a whole, should come out of their sectarian circles of caste, class, gender, et cetera and above all their political convictions and voluntarily educate themselves to be able to make the right decisions.

– Avinay

takeleft@outlook.com

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